Upcoming Reading; Care to Join Me?

So here’s what’s been rattling around in my head:

For now:

15 books, 15 days, 15 blogs
: In honor of the woman profiled in the New York Times last year, who read a book a day for a year and blogged each one, I propose reading a book a day from your shelf starting April 16 (the day after US taxes are due, so you should have a little more time plus be in a frugal mindset) till April 30, 2010 and blogging a review, however brief, the next day.

I would post my entries the night before, so you could link each day starting the 17th in the comments, through May 1, 2010.

Does this sound good to anyone?

I’m afraid coming up with a logo, spreading the word far and wide, and setting up a group on a site like Good Reads is just too much for me, now, though I’m happy to take advice or help on these from more seasoned book challenge folks. I know this is last minute, but that’s me–always running on the ragged edge of disaster. OK, perhaps that’s an exaggeration.

For later:

Call me crazy, but I had a blast last summer reading Infinite Jest, and was thinking of doing something similar: reading Neal Stephenson’s Baroque Cycle, or at least the first two, Quicksilver and The Confusion. They’re each about 900 pages, but so was Cryptonomicon and I loved that and read it at a brisk pace.

Anyone else interested in a Baroque Summer? I’ll probably do it in any case, but it would be way more fun (as Infinite Summer was) with a gang.

31 Responses to “Upcoming Reading; Care to Join Me?”

  1. Amy Says:

    You know I’m in! I have already put together a stack of short books off my shelves for this adventure. Don’t know if I’ll succeed–I’m a slow reader–but I’m sure it’d be fun to try.

    I’ll have to think about the Stephenson books. Or, look into them, as I don’t know much about them.

  2. Susan Says:

    I’m still going to be plugging away at Ulysses till late summer, but the 15 books read sounds awfully appealing. You can count me in on that one. :)

  3. girldetective Says:

    Susan, you fight the good fight. I’m not sure I’ll ever feel like tackling Ulysses, though my husband says he does. (and it may be a reread for him.)

    Amy, your encouragement has kept me to this, so can’t wait to see what we read. I think I’ve got a lot of graphic novels I’ve neglected of late.

    Baroque Cycle has its own wikipedia page. And you’d get serious geek cred if you read them; family project?

  4. Isabella Says:

    Baroque Summer! I’m intrigued. I was so excited about the books when released, but my enthusiasm waned by the time I got my own set. I think I’m willing to give it a try…

  5. girldetective Says:

    Isabella, I love that you’re more interested in the 3K challenge than the short-book-a-day challenge! And just think of all the shelf space we can clear if we read those Stephenson books, and can finally move them to the “read” shelves!

  6. Amy Says:

    So I stopped by Half-Price Books today, and lo and behold, they had a hardcover (with deckled edges–and after the ToB, I know how important that is) of the 1st Baroque book for $7.98. I guess count me in too, at least for the first book. But give me a generous reading schedule–I’m a slow reader.

  7. Steph Says:

    I’d love to try to do your 15 books in 15 days challenge, but I’m just not sure I can manage it! April & May are always really busy times of the year for me as that’s when the semester winds up and I need to get tons of work done, but I’ll see what I can do. I will at the very least scope my bookshelf for short (< 300 pp) books and see what I come up with.

    I will investigate Stephenson’s books more thoroughly before committing to Baroque Summer - normally chunksters are anathema to me, but I’m trying to become a better reader of long books.

  8. Jack Vinson Says:

    I did a Baroque Summer last summer and enjoyed it immensely while you fools were reading Infinite Jest. (What’s wrong with the 3rd book, anyway?) Oh, and I am still thinking of reading Jest.

  9. girldetective Says:

    Nothing’s wrong with the third book, I just think it’s a lot to expect to read one each month of the summer. I may try, but don’t feel comfortable foisting that expectation on others. Unless of course they want to…

  10. girldetective Says:

    Steph, do you have any graphic novels? Those are excellent fast reads. Also, I have to laugh at <300. What about less than 200, or even 150?

  11. carolyn Says:

    I would so love to join in either or both but I just can’t. Struggling through the last month of school here with huge final projects and papers to write. And I’ll be taking two classes this summer so at school 4:30-8:30 M-Th. Not going to have time to read much else beyond my dad’s and my challenge.

  12. girldetective Says:

    Your dad’s and your challenge; have I missed something? Do tell.

  13. Steph Says:

    I don’t have any graphic novels, but I do have some novellas that might work (e.g., The Metamorphosis by Kafka, and Steinbeck’s short novels). The more I look, the more I think I have enough short books to work. Generally speaking our bookshelves wind up on the longer end of things, but I think I can do 300 pages per day!

  14. Inquirer Says:

    I might join you. Baseball season (for the kids) is almost over and the weather here is great for sitting outside with a good book. I need to read a stack of young adult fiction before I hand the books off to my boys for the summer. I think this would be a perfect chance.

  15. girldetective Says:

    Yes, it’s those chunky ones that seem like such a good idea at the time (e.g., the Neal Stephenson Baroque Cycle) that gather the most dust. I’ve got a bunch of shorties, too, as well as a bunch of graphic novels, so I hope I’ll be in good shape. It would be a shame to have the idea and have to punt.

  16. girldetective Says:

    I’m reading When You Reach Me, last year’s Newbery winner, and would have waited to read it but it’s got a long queue at the library, and that’s just not good book manners. Good for you for pre-reading them. My boys are small, but I usually just plunge in, and backpedal if I have to.

  17. Sanchia Says:

    I am hugely tempted by this but am not sure I’ll actually manage a book a day for several days straight… but hey, I want to know about that lady who read a book a day for a year. Did she do any work? Cook? Make a million in the stock market? Raise the kids? Plough the fields? Pilates? Or did she just read?

  18. girldetective Says:

    Sanchia, her sister just died, and as a way of channeling her grief, she threw herself into reading and blogging about it. Sounds like she was a stay at home mom with older kids, and that her family was supportive of her unique way of handling her loss:


    I’m not even sure _I’m__ going to be able to do a book a day. But I’m going to try, and anyone else who wants to try, or just wants to comment and link to their book reviews for the rest of April, are welcome!

  19. Farheen Says:

    I just loved the idea of the challenge. I’ve been toying around with the idea of putting up a post on my blog on the books I finish weekly and well, never got around to doing it. This is the perfect challenge! Please count me in too. I’ve already selected the first three books I’m going to read.
    How do we link it all up together? Would you be interested in the books I read?

  20. Sara Says:

    I don’t have the time for 15 books in 15 days, but I would be interested in a Baroque Summer. I’ve been meaning to read those Stephenson books for ages (I think I actually got through the first one and part of the second at some point before quitting).

  21. girldetective Says:

    Farheen, I’ll have one post a day starting Saturday the 17th dedicated to the 15 Books challenge, and you can link to your post in the comments.

  22. Inquirer Says:

    I have to pre-read most of my kids books, unless they come recommended from someone I trust. If I don’t and they turn out to be of questionable value or have bad words in them, my 10 year-old son tells his dad that “Mom can’t pick books for me to read anymore. They have curse words in them.” Like he hasn’t heard worse … my husband used to manage a construction site. Everyone is a critic!

  23. MFS Says:

    Can’t believe I’m writing this, but I’m going to give it whirl. I may end up with just 15 short stories (or poems), though. Heh, heh, heh.

  24. Sanchia Says:

    [her sister just died, and as a way of channeling her grief, she threw herself into reading and blogging about it. Sounds like she was a stay at home mom with older kids, and that her family was supportive of her unique way of handling her loss]

    Ah, that explains it. Sounds like a good way to distract oneself from serious trauma like that. I hope it worked well enough for her.

  25. Jessica Snell Says:

    I’m in! I don’t think I’ll make it, but it’s the sort of attempt in which I’d love to die trying.

    (Found you via Mental Multivitamin, btw.)

  26. ChristineMM Says:

    Reading a book a day seems insane given my schedule, but I am going to do this. If nothing else I’ll catch up on the books I accepted review copies of. There will be some kids books in there, shorter ones, too. I recently discovered I do best under deadlines and when working thinking I’m part of a group or being held accountable by someone (even strangers in cyberspace).

    I’m kind of scared but I’m in.

  27. Tyrean Says:

    I’m in! I just heard of you and this wonderful challenge through The Thinking Mother blog.
    My kids are interested too, so we will be posting as we go, although I’m not sure we’re going to make it through any major novels during the busyness of our blessedly full lives. I’ll probably be posting at my Homeschool Mom’s Track Record blog and my main “Tyrean’s Writing Spot” blog.

  28. girldetective Says:

    Wow, everybody! I never expected such a response; this is fabulous. Remember, no one is twisting your arm, this is an ATTEMPT to finish 15 books in 15 days, and share your successes (or not) in the comments. But I do hope to make a serious dent in those unread books on my shelves!

  29. Sherry Says:

    Yes, I would like to join in, too. I’ve read my book for today, so now if can get the review written . . .

  30. ChristineMM Says:

    We’re sharing here in the comments?

    My blog post for day one:


    Have a great day everyone!

  31. girldetective Says:

    I think it would work best if everyone posts their 1st book in my 1 of 15 comments, 2nd book in 2 of 15, etc. That way we can keep up with one another as we go.